Effective Care Plan Meetings


If you have a loved one in a nursing home then you should be invited to attend a quarterly meeting to discuss how your loved one is doing and determine what course her care should follow going forward.  These meetings are usually called "care plan meetings/conferences" and they are required if the facility accepts Medicaid and/or Medicare.  

These meetings should not be taken lightly.  You should attend the meeting if at all possible, at least via speaker phone, and you should go there fully prepared with a list of specific questions for the nursing home staff.  This is your best opportunity to voice your concerns and determine whether your loved one is getting the best possible care.  This is also your chance to provide the staff with background information that could prove helpful in formulating the care plan.

I have been appointed many times by local probate courts to act as the conservator for seniors when family members and friends are unable to do so.  This means I have attended innumerable care conferences and I usually pose the following questions, among others depending on thes ituation, to the staff:

Have there been any notable changes in the resident's condition since the last meeting?  If so, what was the cause?

Is the resident participating in the facility's recreational/social events?  If not, can steps be taken to facilitate his/her participation?

Have there been any visitors for the resident since the last meeting?  If so, have those visits been helpful or detrimental to the resident's spirits?

What specific therapies are being provided?

Are there any roommate issues I should be aware of?

Is the resident short on any personal items (toiletries, clothes, reading material, etc.)?

These are some of the standard questions I usually ask.  However, every resident is different. So I suggest asking the above-mentioned questions as well as questions that are specific to your loved one's situation.